If you have faith as a mustard seed, you will say to this mountain, "Move from here to there," and it will move; and nothing will be impossible for you. ~Matthew 17:20

Friday, February 28, 2014

Spencer's in Da House

I have been anticipating February 26th for about a month now because it is the day that Spencer arrived in LA!  His first flight alone went smoothly and without any hiccups and we are so grateful.

Spencer will be here for three weeks and our social calendar is already full with sporting events, go cart racing, competitive putt putt games, bowling and anything else they can think of to entertain.

Thursday was catch-up day for all of us as the boys worked on school and I waded through a stack of papers that was knee high.  I loved that we capped our afternoon by getting outside in the beautiful sunshine and having fun at the park.
Cole and Spencer with our new Aussie room mate, Caitlin.

Slade, our previous room mate, met us at the park with his dog Merlin so Mer and I hung out and explored every nook and cranny while the kids played Frisbee.
He is such a sweetie and reminds me so much of my Rusty.

I hopped out of bed this morning to go run but not only is it raining, it is POURING, which is so unusual for LA but great since we are 12 inches behind in rain fall.  Since traffic is already horrendous because of the Oscar's on Sunday (just 5 miles from our house), adding rain to the mix just accelerated it to a whole new crazy level, which means the Ewing's are going to lay low this weekend.

Have a great weekend and surprise someone today with a kind word or gesture.

"Be glad and rejoice forever in what I will create."
~Isaiah 65:18

Friday, February 21, 2014

Thankful, Even During a Crisis

This week, I had a revelation during my morning walk.  While I didn't figure out why in the world anyone would want to decaffeinate coffee or make sugar free chocolate (what's the point?), I did have an epiphany that rocked my world.  Ready?  We are incredibly blessed.  And while you are thinking, "Really?  You didn't already know that?", just hear me out.  

On Sunday, I was walking and mentally going through my prayer list while also explaining to God (like He doesn't already know) that I still don't have answers for blah blah and I'm wondering about blah blah and oh, yeah, I need to figure out blah blah when honestly, truly I felt like I got hit with a lightning bolt.  I stopped dead in my tracks and I had the most amazing feeling come over me and then a voice in my head that said, "God has blessed you so much.  Aren't you ashamed that you are constantly asking him for something instead of thanking him?"  I honestly looked around and expected to see someone standing behind me talking to me because the voice was that clear.

I can't really tell you much about the rest of my walk except that I spent the next 38 minutes thanking God for the beautiful blue sky, the smell of freshly mowed grass and the kids playing in the park.  At church, the service seemed to be delivered on steroids and every song seemed to sound so much sweeter than usual.  And all week, I have had a wonderful peace that has followed me through each day, even when I received a text last night from a friend asking me why an ambulance was headed to my house.

So while Spencer was getting ready for bed, it seems his blood sugar dropped extremely low which then brought on one of his Myoclonic seizures (it's an abrupt spasm or twitch due to the placement of his tumor) which caused him to fall, hit his head and lose consciousness.  Thankfully, Brad heard him and was able to get an ambulance that transported him to the hospital in a short amount of time.  After a CT scan and an x-ray, they were able to determine that he didn't have a concussion but he did have a gash in his head that required some staples.  During my last phone conversation with Brad at 1:20 a.m. (Arkansas time), I was thanking God for blessing me with an amazing husband who is always able and willing to do anything that needs to be done.

Another thankful moment came early this morning when my mom said she would be able to spend the day with Spencer while Brad went to work, although Spencer probably thought we were overreacting because he felt fine.  It didn't matter because there was no way we were leaving him alone.

Whew, so much to be thankful for and so much sleep to catch up on this weekend.
One more thankful item; this wild child went crazy when the paramedics were loading up "his boy" into the ambulance and I'm surprised thrilled he didn't chew their legs off.   But today, he was showing off his sweet side to Grandma.

Won't you join me in replacing your "I need" prayers with "Thank you for..." prayers.  You might be surprised at the difference it makes in your life.

"So humble yourselves under the mighty power of God and in His good time He will honor you.  Give all your worries and care to God, for He cares about what happens to you."
~1 Peter 5:6-7

Sunday, February 16, 2014

Life Moves Along

Wow, I blinked and realized it was Sunday and a new week is getting ready to begin.  What happened to last week and what did we do?  Let's see:

1.  Auditions and lots of them.  Cole got a callback on one that he really wanted but they went with someone else to go to Network for testing.  At least he has made another fan with a Casting Director.  We already have two auditions this week and it's not even Monday.

2.  We have new room mates from Australia via New Zealand so they call themselves "Kiwis" (I love that!).  A Mum and her daughter who are lovely.  Wait, am I starting to sound like an Aussie?  We've had a great week but I think Cole is a little overwhelmed living with five girls.

3.  Spencer is feeling back to normal so that makes this mama very happy.  He took his ACT test last week and this week he will be busy with doctor's appointments and getting things together to submit to ACH so he can begin volunteering.  I am so proud of his determination to give back to the hospital that has given our family so much.  I'm also super excited that Spencer will be flying to LA on 2/26 and staying until 3/18!  Woohoo, can't wait!!!

4.  I finally got back to running/walking last week and I feel so much better.  Why do I put the every day activities ahead of the one thing that keeps me on an even keel?  Oh well, I'm back in the groove now and that's all that matters.

5.  Our landlord sent us an e-mail last week letting us know that she has decided to sell our condo!  Yikes!  So....I am keeping my eye open for rentals in the area, maybe ones that accept dogs, cats and husbands.  Hint, hint.

Bring on the week!

By the way, it's been beautiful and at least 75 degrees every day this past week.  :)

"Now without faith it is impossible to please him..."
~Hebrews 11:6

Monday, February 10, 2014

Good News for Spencer

I haven't had a good hair day since last Friday because my hair has been standing on end ever since I found out that Brad was taking Spencer to the ER.  But today, I tamed my hair into a ponytail when I Skyped with Spencer and I could see with my own eyes that he was looking much better and that he had that twinkle back.  Whooooo, deep breath.  Obviously, Dr. Morris nailed it when he put Spencer on oral and inhaled antibiotics.  This morning, when I received these pictures, then I REALLY knew Spencer was feeling better...

Anytime he feels like taking pictures of Baby Kitty, then I know he is on the mend.

Cole is busy, busy, busy which he loves.  I hope I have good news to report for him very soon.

Thank you for all your prayers.  Nobody can look at Spencer and NOT believe that prayers work!

"I will praise you forever for what you have done; in your name I will hope, for your name is good.  I will praise you in the presence of your saints."
~Psalm 52:9

Friday, February 7, 2014

Stressed but Blessed Beyond Measure

I'm sitting in the living room listening to all the different conversations going on around me at the condo.  The kids are laughing, the adults are laughing and I am soaking it in because these last few days have been very trying.

When Spencer gets sick, I worry.  But when Spencer gets sick and he is in Little Rock and I am in Los Angeles, well, you can imagine my state of mind.  Brad took Spencer to the ER at Arkansas Children's Hospital Friday morning.  Spencer started feeling bad and spiked a temp and we knew that with him only just being out of the hospital one week, it wasn't something we should let go.  After a chest x-ray and blood work, the Pulmonologist determined that he only had a cold but with Spencer, a normal cold quickly turns to something much more serious if not taken care of immediately.  Because of the number of flu cases in the hospital, Dr. Morris opted to send Spencer home on oral and inhaled antibiotics.  Yeah for going home instead of being inpatient.

But, when Brad arrived at the Kroger pharmacy to pick up Spencer's inhaled steroid/antibiotic, he was told that the antibiotic was not in stock but when they received it, the total was $6,000 for a 10 day supply and the insurance would not cover the cost!  I am so thankful I was not the one who was standing there because I can tell you beyond a shadow of a doubt that I would have totally flipped out!

Brad contacted the pharmacy at ACH this morning and the pharmacist told him that they had the medicine in stock and, in fact, our insurance would pay for it.  He made a beeline for the pharmacy and texted me when he left the hospital with the medicine; "I feel like I just robbed a bank!".  The pharmacist told him that their cost was $8,000 for a 10 day supply.  I know beyond a shadow of a doubt that God's hands were all over this situation and I am so thankful for His blessing.

Another blessing came in the form of my mom, who spent the day with Spencer.  I was able to relax and Brad was able to work all the while knowing that Spencer was in good hands.  I had to laugh at the picture she sent me first thing this morning with this caption...
"Where's my mama?"

After Skyping with Spencer this evening, I am not able to see any improvement but I also know that I am very impatient when it comes to him being on the mend.  I am hopeful that tomorrow will be a better day.

Cole has been busy since we made it back to LA and had two auditions today for new pilots.  Despite some rain yesterday, our weather is gorgeous and we both agree that we need to get Brad and Spencer out to LA to soak in the sun and get rid of all those Arkansas germs.

Thank you for praying us through a crazy week.

"O Lord my God, I will give you thanks forever."
~Psalm 30:12

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Trying to Live By Faith

My day was going great this morning until I received a call from Spencer and immediately, I could tell that he was sick.  He sounded awful and of course, my mind went into overdrive and I was trying to figure out how I was going to get Cole to his two auditions on Friday AND fly home to be with Spencer.  Then I have to remind myself to breathe.

So, don't you think that after two weeks of being in the hospital on IV antibiotics and inhaled antibiotics, Spencer's body would be completely healed.  I would.  Spencer told me he imagines his immune system as "a wall that is built out of straw and then the illness swoops in the straw goes up in flames and the sickness has the upper hand."  While I think that he has a very active imagination, he's probably right.  After two serious illnesses since the first December, I should not be surprised that he is sick again.

I am reminding myself every 10 seconds to take deep breaths and know that Brad has this situation under control.  There is nothing I can do from 2,000 miles away so obviously I need to pray instead of worry.  Pray instead of fretting.  Don't stay awake and think of the "what ifs" but stay awake and tell God that I know He is in control and He will take care of everything.  And then believe what I say and trust.

Won't you please join me in praying for complete healing and knowing that God is in control.

"May God show us his favor and bless us!  May He smile on us!"
~Psalm 67:1

Monday, February 3, 2014

Getting Out While We Can

I had plans.  Not just regular plans but BIG Super Bowl plans.  I had a menu planned and even decorations to be hung in honor of both teams, although I think Brad would have put the ixnay on the blue, green and orange Christmas lights that I wanted to adorn the outside of the house.

And then, all my plans were upended by the Weather Channel and Todd Youkobian who were both warning me of inclement weather beginning Sunday night.  Dang it, sometime I hate going to Plan B.

My original plan was to leave Little Rock bright and early Monday morning to head towards the West Coast.  We've traveled the route via I-40 so many times, that we can do it in our sleep.  But lo and behold, Mother Nature was bringing large amounts of snow to our I-40 route and this Southern girl does not drive in snow.  So, Plan B included leaving one day early AND taking a new route. 

We left Little Rock around 9:00 a.m. Sunday morning in the rain and by the time we arrived in Benton (30 minutes), I was ready to scream.  It wasn't just raining, it was pouring.  By the time we hit Dallas, it was sleeting.  I was headed to I-20 but Brad called the Highway Patrol and they warned him of ice and accidents on I-20 so we headed further south to I-10 towards Austin.  At 5:45, I pulled into a Drury Inn in Austin and practically kissed the ground.  I was done.

After a quick dinner, I fell asleep around 7:30 while Cole was watching the Super Bowl while on the phone with Spencer.  So thankful those two love each other.

Cole and I didn't get on the road until 8:45 a.m. on Monday but I was fine with that; I was taking a route that I was completely unfamiliar with so a little extra time was just what I needed.  Plus, I had a book on tape (that I rented from Cracker Barrel) so I was really looking forward to the drive.

Siri took us on a rural route from I-35 to I-10 and I LOVED it.  One of these days, Brad and I are going to tour the US in an RV and when we do, we will definitely take this route.  Such quaint towns and amazing looking vineyards!  

We were rocking along in the middle of nowhere, Texas, when I came to a town and my inner voice said, "You better stop and go potty and fill up with gas."  Do any of you have that annoying voice or is it just me?  And, if you have that voice, do you give it credence or ignore it?  Well, I ignored mine and kept on trucking.  Big mistake.

About 15 minutes after I passed the last town, my bladder began reminding me that I had consumed a 40 oz. Sonic pineapple lime slush and 64 oz. of ice water.  No problem, I thought.  I will stop at the next town.  Only problem, the next town did not have any facilities.  Or the next town.  Or the next.  Oh boy.

Twenty-seven miles later, I am starting to panic.  My bladder is threatening to burst and my GPS is telling me that the next facilities are still 30 minutes away.  Cole is telling me to pull over and go on the side of the road but we're in Texas which means that those little scrub bushes are housing bugs that are bigger than my arm and deadlier than a Black Mamba.  In other words, NO WAY am I pulling over!  So I keep driving, and driving, and driving.  Finally, I top the crest of a hill and there it is.  TADAAAA!  A REST STOP!  Forget that I don't stop at Rest Stop's because of my knowledge of serial killers or perverts or people that have Hungarian Body Rot.  I squealed to a stop and did the "duck walk" to the bathroom.  I was prepared to pull someone out of the bathroom so that I could use it but thankfully, I was alone.  Ahhhhhhhhh.

Back in the car, I made a promise to Cole and to myself.  No more ignoring that little voice.

After driving through freezing fog (whoever heard of that?) and crazy traffic in El Paso, Texas and then having a Border Stop where they asked me if I was an illegal citizen (blondish red hair and freckles?), we finally stopped in Lordsburg, NM where they boast amazing hiking trails and a "Shakespeare Ghost Town".  All I care about is a clean and comfortable bed and the fact that we are only eight or nine hours from the condo.

Brad sent me this beautiful picture from the mountain this morning.

Hope you all have a good night's sleep and have safe travels tomorrow, wherever you are.

"If we live, we live for the Lord; if we die, we die for the Lord.  Therefore, whether we live or die, we are the Lord's."
~Romans 14:8